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Printing with Soluble Support Material: HIPS

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High Impact Polystyrene (HIPS) has long been a popular soluble-support material for professionally 3D-printed parts that contain highly complex geometric features. Used in combination with ABS, HIPS dissolves in d-Limonine. In this article, you’ll learn about the features, benefits, and best practices of printing with ABS and HIPS using the MakerGear M3 Independent Dual (M3-ID).

While the majority of 3D prints requiring support material are better suited to the use of same-material support. As with PVA water-soluble support, HIPS is perfect for parts in which support material removal is either highly labor-intensive or mechanically infeasible. Because HIPS is used strictly with ABS build material and dissolves in d-limonene, not water, it is best suited to industrial environments and is not ideal for home use.

Those familiar with PVA soluble support material will fall in love with HIPS thanks to its excellent intersurface adhesion with ABS as well as being comparatively less hygroscopic (compared to PVA, HIPS it can be stored for longer periods of time with a lower risk of spoilage due to moisture absorption).

 

Basics:

ABS Extruder Temperature: 240-245  °C

HIPS Extruder Temperature: 240-250 °C

Heated Build Platform Temperature: 90-115 °C

Retraction: 2-3 mm

Cooling: 0%

 

HIPS-specific parameters:

  • Brim to ensure adhesion.
  • Dry box recommended for maximum reliability.
  • Hyper-retraction in tool-change and ending script to reduce clog risk.
  • Prime pillar.

Troubleshooting:

*Proper T0-T1 Nozzle calibration along all three axes is very important to ensuring proper material placement and adhesion.

Inter-material adhesion issues can be caused by excessive cooling as well as inadequate ambient and extruder temperatures, which can be resolved by either increasing the bed temperature and/or reducing the fan’s cooling rate slightly.

To guarantee consistent first-layer adhesion, ensure proper calibration a apply a light coating of PVA (glue stick) or hairspray to the glass build surface for maximum reliability. 

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